Ovo-vegetarian diet is associated with lower systemic blood pressure in Taiwanese women.


Ho CP, Yu JH, Lee TJF

Year Published: 



Public Health


Study Design: 


OBJECTIVE: This study was designed to investigate blood pressure (BP) profiles among Taiwanese women with different dietary patterns. STUDY DESIGN: Cross-sectional study. METHODS: A total of 269 non-hypertensive Taiwanese women, 40 years of age or older, were surveyed using structured questionnaires, and measurements of BP and physiological parameters were made. To assess differences among vegans, ovo-vegetarians, and meat eaters in terms of BP, demographic, and health behavior data, the chi-squared and Fisher's exact tests were employed for categorical variables, and analysis of variance and independent t-tests were performed for continuous variables. Multiple regression analysis was used to examine the relationship between BP and dietary patterns while controlling for potential confounding factors. RESULTS: A significant difference was found among the three test groups in terms of age, education, employment, stress, and waist-hip ratio. Systolic blood pressure (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) significantly differed among the three groups. After controlling for age, body weight, waist circumference, and hip circumference, the three groups were observed to be a significant risk factor of the SBP and DBP. The SBP and DBP of the ovo-vegetarian group were significantly lower than those of the meat-eater group. No significant differences were found between the vegan and meat-eater groups in terms of SBP and DBP. CONCLUSION: Dietary pattern is a likely risk factor for SBP and DBP outcomes in Taiwanese women. In particular, the SBP and DBP of ovo-vegetarians are the lowest among the values observed for all dietary patterns. This finding suggests that an ovo-vegetarian diet is beneficial for long-term BP control and prevention of hypertension in females.